Hacking has been all over the news lately. In the past week or so, major global corporations Apple, Burger King and Jeep, as well as customer service technology vendor Zendesk, have all been hacked -- to say nothing of apparent intrusions into systems governing the country’s infrastructure by the Chinese military.

Let’s take a look at exactly what has been happening in the world of high-profile hacking in recent days, starting with Apple.

Apple - Lights Out for Java? 

Apple employees visiting a site for iPhone developers that was apparently infected with Java-based malware that also caused a cybersecurity breach at Facebook in January had their corporate Macs hacked. As reported by Computerworld, Apple resolved the situation by issuing a Java for OS X 2013-001 1.0 update.

However, Computerworld says many experts are urging users of any platform (and this specific malware reportedly targeted Macs) to simply “shut off Java.” Java is said to pose unique risks as a cross-platform application and Cisco has estimated 80 percent of cyberattacks exploit Java vulnerabilities, with online ads being a major culprit. Apple’s latest Java update actually disables the Java SE 6 applet plug-in, which Computerworld says is tantamount to Apple abandoning Java. 

Burger King, Jeep Discover the Dark Side of Social

While brands are exhorted to “be social” and maintain an active presence on leading consumer social networks such as Twitter, this week Burger King there is a dark side to social branding.

An Econsultancy blog post reports that hackers who were possibly (but as of yet not publicly confirmed to be) affiliated with the global hacker organization Anonymous broke into Burger King’s Twitter account, changed the name and image to that of chief Burger King rival McDonald’s, and spent an hour sending out images and comments hurtful to the fast food chain’s brand.


Econsultancy essentially gives Burger King a pass as far as allowing this to actually occur, since groups such as Anonymous are capable of defeating the cyber security efforts of world governments, but rebukes the company for only sending out a single tweet obliquely referring to an “interesting day” once the hack was fixed and planning to apologize publicly on Facebook, rather than Twitter.